NEW DELHI: The Supreme Court collegium has overruled the objections of the Union department of justice to recommend the appointment of four advocates as judges of Bombay, Madras and Karnataka high courts, saying their elevation would increase the representation of women, marginalised communities and tax experts in constitutional courts.
The collegium of Chief Justice DY Chandrachud and Justices Sanjay Kishan Kaul and Sanjiv Khanna recommended the appointment of Manjusha Ajay Deshpande as a judge of Bombay HC, N Senthilkumar and G Arul Murugan for Madras HC and KV Aravind for Karnataka HC, proposals for which were initiated by the HC collegiums concerned in August-September last year.

The Bombay HC collegium had sent a proposal for Deshpande’s appointment in September last year. The SC collegium’s resolution, after considering inputs from the department of justice and consultee judges, said, “In our assessment, the candidate is a competent lawyer. She has been in practice, since 1991, for over 32 years. The candidate is well versed in several branches of law, particularly in constitutional and service matters. Her elevation would add to the representation of women on the bench of Bombay HC, particularly amongst women lawyers practising before the bench in Aurangabad.”

The Karnataka HC collegium had recommended the appointment of Aravind as a judge of the HC in August last year. The SC collegium, while recommending his name to the Union government, said, “We have scrutinised and evaluated the material placed on record. We have considered the observations of the department of justice in the file. Nothing adverse to the integrity or character of Aravind has been noticed.”
Referring to his experience of 23 years at the bar with appearances in 567 reported judgments, the SC collegium said, “There is a considerable amount of tax litigation before the Karnataka high court. There is a need for specialised judges having domain experience in this branch of law. Tax law is integrally connected with various other branches of law including commercial, corporate and personal law.”
Approving the HC proposal of August last year for appointment of advocates Senthilkumar (belonging to SC community) and Murugan (OBC), the SC collegium overruled the objections of the department of justice and said, “This would enable greater representation to marginalised communities in higher judiciary.”

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